Photo of Mike Weatherley

Mike Weatherley (Hove, Conservative)

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office whether his Department has considered the merits of fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) licensing obligations in respect of procurement policy Action Note 3/11, issued on 31 January 2011.

Photo of Francis Maude

Francis Maude (The Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General; Horsham, Conservative)

The Government require that their ICT should be built on open standards, wherever possible, to improve competition and avoid lock-in to a particular technology or supplier.

Fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) specifications may present some difficulties for the open source software development model in terms of patents and royalties. To deliver a level playing field for both open source and proprietary software, open standards are needed.

Annotations

Gerry Gavigan
Posted on 12 Sep 2011 4:46 pm (Report this annotation)

A more interesting answer might have reflected on the increasing legal requirement to interact with government online (e.g., taxes) and therefore if there was an implicit requirement to use software or computers that require the payment of royalties or licence fees which have effectively been imposed by government represented a tax. See for example

www.parliament.uk/deposits/depositedpapers/2010/DEP2010-2374...

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